Photo courtesy of Tyler Lizenby (lizenbyphoto.com)

L. Andrew Cooper

L. Andrew Cooper thinks the smartest people like horror, fantasy, and sci-fi. Early in life, he couldn’t handle the scary stuff—he’d sneak and watch horror films and then keep his parents up all night with his nightmares. In the third grade, he finally convinced his parents to let him read grown-up horror novels: he started with Stephen King’s _Firestarter_, and by grade five, he was doing book reports on _The Stand_.

When his parents weren’t being kept up late by his nightmares, they worried that his fascination with horror fiction would  ...See more >


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"A Grand Guignol cat-and-mouse tale... grisly... unsettling... an undeniably horrific thriller."

Kirkus Reviews


AWARDS, PRESS & INTERESTS

The Star Chamber Show # 22, Featuring L. Andrew Cooper, 2014

L. Andrew Cooper: The Extreme Side of Horror, 2014

Horror Interview: Descending Lines by L. Andrew Cooper, 2013

The Cabin in the Woods and the End of American Exceptionalism, 2013

Interview with Author L. Andrew Cooper, 2013

"Dario Argento" Author Talks with Dario Argento, 2013

Review of "Burning the Middle Ground", 2013

Podcast: A Spot of Terror, 2013

Witches, Murder, and the Need to Rescue 'Dario Argento', 2013

Green Hornet Makes America Bossy Bottom: Who's Topping Who?, 2011

Hometown : Duluth, Georgia

Favorite author : Ketchum, King, Lovecraft, Woolf, Faulkner, H. James, Baudelaire, Le Fanu, Dickens, Poe, Brontes (CAE), Austen, C. B. Brown, M. Lewis, Walpole...

Favorite book : Absalom, Absalom! or The Waves

Day job : professor and author (job exceeds day)

Favorite word constabulatin'


BOOKS REVIEWED BY KIRKUS:

FICTION & LITERATURE
Pub Date:
Page count: 222pp

A Grand Guignol cat-and-mouse tale about a monstrous husband pursuing his fleeing wife.

Megan and Carter face a terrible problem: Their 6-year-old child, Caitlin, is dying of cancer and doesn’t have much time left. But Carter has a plan to use the black magic that he and a dimwitted dormitory buddy learned back in college in order to cast a spell on the sick little girl. Carter is sure that the ritual will save Caitlin’s life; never mind that the last time he dabbled in the dark arts, his classmate died, or that the grisly ritual requires Carter and Megan to sacrifice their future baby. The ensuing narrative confidently seesaws back and forth between the couple’s disintegrating relationship and Carter’s halcyon days studying a creepy tome called The Alchemy of the Will by a forgotten academic named Dr. Allen Fincher. Cooper, a horror aficionado and film-studies teacher, largely eschews the highly charged politics inherent in his self-described “nasty little story”—despite the obvious parallels to the debates regarding abortion, stem cell research and cloning—in favor of tracking Megan’s escalating anguish and Carter’s growing fiendishness: “Carter’s fingers passed before his eyes, showing him the bits of skin that clung to their sharp tips—remnants of the man’s face.” As readers will likely expect, Megan eventually screws up enough courage to hit the road, a curiously whiny Caitlin in tow. From there, however, the heretofore steady narrative becomes a thoroughly protracted affair in which the tension grows tedious, even as the body count soars. Ultimately, the most unsettling thing about the gory goings-on may be that they could serve as a tasty prologue to a more interesting tale—about a little lost girl who grows up with a bloodthirsty monster.

An undeniably horrific thriller.

ADDITIONAL WORKS AVAILABLE:

BURNING THE MIDDLE GROUND
Horror, Thriller, Conspiracy, Dark Fantasy

_Burning the Middle Ground_ is a dark fantasy about small-town America that transforms readers' fears about the country's direction into a haunting tale of religious conspiracy and supernatural mind control. A character-driven sensibility like Stephen King's and a flair for the bizarre like Bentley Little's delivers as much appeal for dedicated fans of fantasy and horror as for mainstream readers looking for an exciting ride. Brian McCullough comes home from school and discovers that his ten-year-old sister Fran has murdered their parents. Five years later, a journalist, Ronald Glassner, finds Brian living at the same house in the small town of Kenning, Georgia. Planning a book on the McCullough Tragedy, Ronald stumbles into a struggle between Kenning's First Church, run by the mysterious Reverend Michael Cox, and the New Church, run by the rebellious Jeanne Harper. At the same time, Kenning's pets go berserk, and dead bodies, with the eyes and tongues removed from their heads, begin to appear.

Published:
ISBN: 978-1613181386
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DARIO ARGENTO
Film Studies, Horror Studies, Film Theory, Auteur Studies

Commanding a cult following among horror fans, Italian film director Dario Argento is best known for his work in two closely related genres, the crime thriller and supernatural horror. In his four decades of filmmaking, Argento has displayed a commitment to innovation, from his directorial debut with 1970's suspense thriller _The Bird with the Crystal Plumage_ to 2009's _Giallo_. His films, like the lurid yellow-covered murder-mystery novels they are inspired by, follow the suspense tradition of hard-boiled American detective fiction while incorporating baroque scenes of violence and excess. L. Andrew Cooper uses controversies and theories about the films' reflections on sadism, gender, sexuality, psychoanalysis, aestheticism, and genre to declare the anti-rational logic of Argento's oeuvre. Approaching the films as rhetorical statements made through extremes of sound and vision, Cooper places Argento in a tradition of aestheticized horror that includes De Sade, De Quincey, Poe, and Hitchcock. He reveals how the director's stylistic excesses, often condemned for glorifying misogyny and other forms of violence, offer productive resistance to the cinema's visual, narrative, and political norms.

Published:
ISBN: 978-0252078743
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DESCENDING LINES [SCREENPLAY, SEEKING REPRESENTATION] (Unpublished)


GOTHIC REALITIES
Cultural Studies, Literary Criticism, Film Studies, Horror Studies, Gothic Studies

Eighteenth-century critics believed Gothic fiction would inspire deviant sexuality, instill heretical beliefs, and encourage antisocial violence--this book puts these beliefs to the test. After examining the assumptions behind critics' fears, it considers nineteenth-century concerns about sexual deviance, showing how _Frankenstein_, _Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde_, _Dorian Gray_, and other works helped construct homosexuality as a pathological, dangerous phenomenon. It then turns to television and film, particularly _Buffy the Vampire Slayer_ and David DeCoteau's direct-to-video movies, to trace Gothicized sexuality's lasting impact. Moving to heretical beliefs, _Gothic Realities_ surveys ghost stories from Dickens's _A Christmas Carol_ to _Poltergeist_, articulating the relationships between fiction and the "real" supernatural. Finally, it considers connections between Gothic horror and real-world violence, especially the tragedies at Columbine and Virginia Tech.

Published:
ISBN: 978-0786448357
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IMAGINATION REIMAGINED: NOT YOUR CHILDREN'S FAIRY TALES (CO-EDITOR AND CONTRIBUTOR)
Short Fiction Anthology, Horror, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Crime Thriller, Comedy, Fairy Tale

Reimagine the fairy tales of your youth through nine of the most creative authors writing today! See Rose Red and Snow White through the eyes of Jason S. Walters in an intriguing new telling of the age old tale. Feel the bone-chilling "Kindertotenlieder" by horror writer L. Andrew Cooper. Have you wondered what happens "After Ever?" Experience a vision from the brilliant writing of William I. Levy. Come back to reality for a moment in a crime thriller by Christopher Kokoski that will leave you in awe, scratching the "Hair of Your Chinny-Chin-Chin." The Ugly Duckling will never look quite the same after reading "Free to Be Donnie Kinnaird" by the astonishing Michael Williams. The Big Bad Wolf comes alive in the Brad Parnell's "The Girl in the Red Hood." Go on the adventure of Hans and Grace through the unique styling of Georgia L. Jones. Wish yourself into another dimension with "Genie in the Bottle" by Bryan and Wendy Schardein. These boots are made for walking into an unusual realm in the graceful musings of "Puss in Boots" by G. L. Giles. Whether your favorite is a fairy tale by Robert Browning, the Grimm Brothers, Giovanni Francesco Straparola, or Hans Christian Andersen, you are sure to have your imagination run wild with each story in _Imagination Reimagined_.

Published:
ISBN: 978-1613181638
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LEAPING AT THORNS
Short Fiction Collection, Horror, Dark Fantasy, Conspiracy

LEAPING AT THORNS arranges 15 of L. Andrew Cooper's unpublished, experimental short horror stories into a "triptych" of themes--complicity, entrapment, and conspiracy--elements that run throughout the collection. The stories span from the emotionally-centered and violence-mild "Last Move," about a mother and son whose cross-country move might be complicated by a haunted U-Move truck, to the almost unthinkably horrific "Charlie Mirren and His Mother," also about a mother and son, but their lives take a turn that might be traumatic for readers as well. While "Worm Would" offers a psychosexual fantasia on the sheer grossness that is a flatworm, "Tapestry" uses absurd, sometimes comic violence to take Jessica, the young professional protagonist, into a political nightmare. The absurd reaches dark extremes in "Lachrymosa," a story of almost pure hallucination, and stretches back toward the comic in the brain-and-tongue-twister "Heart on a Stick." The "conspiracy" panel of the triptych, from "The Fate of Doctor Fincher" to "The Special One," is a series of standalone stories that each adds important details to the fictional world and grand scheme of Dr. Allen Fincher, who also lurks in the background of Cooper's novels BURNING THE MIDDLE GROUND and DESCENDING LINES.

Published:
ISBN: 1613181663
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MONSTERS (CO-EDITOR AND CONTRIBUTOR)
Horror Anthology, Composition Textbook, College Reader

It's under the bed; it's in the closet. It's the thing in the basement, but it's also the thing in the mirror, hot breath on the back of your neck, cold eyes staring at you with loathing and hunger. The monster sometimes inspires heroes: a community's bravest members rise up and defend people's livelihoods against an indescribable threat. But in the dead of night, when no one can hear, even a hero might admit that a monster inspires one thing more than any other: fear.

Published:
ISBN: 978-1598714838
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RACIST [NOVEL, MAINSTREAM THRILLER, SEEKING REPRESENTATION] (Unpublished)
Fiction, literature, thriller, conspiracy

A realistically-grounded thriller about race and paranoia in the American South that builds from a misunderstanding in an office setting into what could turn into a race war in the city of Atlanta.

Friday Fiction Episode 9: Burning the Middle Ground by L. Andrew Cooper